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VAS

Harold has assets in onshore accounts

SUNDAY MAGAZINE
By Peter Theuri | October 10th 2021

A short eight years ago, Harold was a rich man. He owned two jalopies, a rusty pick-up truck and the discoloured Peugeot 504 that now sits in the backyard, and which was used as a chicken coop before Harold chickened out of keeping fowls, due to competitors’ foul play.

He ate all the chicken. The pick-up truck was a massive vehicle. It was old and could not start normally, but it was a powerful machine when it powered on.

Down memory lane. Harold once struck down, and killed, Melissa. Melissa was one of the most loved dogs by the chiefs of a neighbouring village. News that followed the unfortunate incident also indicated that the pick-up truck rolled and was damaged beyond recognition.

The mangled wreck lay in some undisclosed river bed, and Harold, the grateful survivor, was pardoned by Melissa’s owners. The Peugeot 504 also stalled a day after killing a stray cat. I have always associated Harold with animosity; animals do not thrive in his presence. Cockroaches and mosquitos are an exception.

It was therefore unnerving when, last week, operatives reported that they had spotted Harold’s pick-up in a faraway village. Reports were that it was being used to ferry water.

Clear the rumour

When news broke, in the morning, Harold was at Sue’s. I sent for him; we had to clear the rumour before it ruined his reputation. So when he staggered into the house, I confronted him. “Lies are spreading throughout the village and all you can do is lie in the pub and let your support fall?”

He spat a bottle top.

“What rumours, skinny?”

“The pick-up. They are claiming it is still in business. We need to counter that.”

He wriggled out of his cassock.

“Good luck with that,” he said. I was seething.

“It is your reputation we are trying to save. We need to fight the lies,” I argued.

His drunken eyes peered at me as if I was a mile away.

“There are no lies in that.”

I jumped.

Harold has been duping all of us, including myself, his most trusted confidant and legal adviser. All along, he has been collecting revenue from his pick-up. All along, he has been making a fortune and keeping it secret.

“It seems you cannot trust me again. I wish to resign as your adviser and as…”

“My knees?”

“Nephew.”

“Oh. Good, good. I am tired of feeding you and so this will do my economy some good,” he snorted and left.

 Harold, who insists on feeding me on what he knows I do not eat, is the only relative who can tolerate me, and so I had to strike a deal. I followed him into the kitchen (I had to play catch up) where he was drinking ketchup.

“Uncle, you have to be honest with me. You have been making money and all along we do not even have anything for our campaigns?”

He finished eating a forbidden fruit and looked at me.

“Listen. There are a lot of things men are not allowed to reveal. We do not have to tell everyone that we have foreign assets that will give us money during campaigns. Let them think we are broke,” he said.

“But you should let me know. Keep it from everyone else but not from me,” I argued.

“Look, Pete. That truck is not mine. I relinquished it to those people. I get very little from it. Do not ask more questions.”

Like every typical Kenyan, I will ask questions if you caution me against it,

“What else don’t I know, Harold?”

Harold has been stashing away money somewhere. Even as he fleeces people for his daily bread, his accounts continue to swell elsewhere.

Were we anywhere near the coast, I would call them offshore accounts. But these were clearly onshore.

Harold is a politician like every other, I now know. I had thought that his priesthood makes him different, clearly forgetting that wolves are capable of wearing sheep’s cloth, in this case, the cassock.?  

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